A diptych by poet Mary Jo Salter, the text of Fred Hersch's Two Haiku compares the fleeting span of a life to the turning of the seasons. In addition to painting the words of these brief stanzas with rich chromatic harmonies, Hersch's six-minute score calls upon the singers to illustrate the themes of the haiku with the sounds of whistled birdsong and unvoiced breaths.

Dedicated to the memory of musician and educator Steve Zegree, this eight-part choral setting was commissioned for vocal octet Roomful of Teeth by Ryan McNaughton and premiered at the 2017 Ecstatic Music Festival.

  • Composed for Roomful of Teeth
  • Text by Mary Jo Salter
  • Uses whistling and audible breathing
  • Challenging 8-part mixed choral piece
  • Driven by rich chromatic harmonies